Wednesday, July 22, 2009

From the mouths of babes...

I believe I have mentioned that my eldest is a piece of work ... and I am learning that her little sister is quickly becoming her frame. There are days where they actually leave me speechless, and that is not an easy task. Sunday morning past was one of those mornings. Sundays are the only day of the week that we are all home and able to linger in bed a little later than normal ... funny, but it seems Sundays are also the day that my girls are awake at the crack of dawn... digressing, sorry. So both girls, my husband, myself, our 93 pound dog, and our cat are all in the bed together. We have a king sized bed, but I am curious if there may be anything larger on the market lately ... perhaps we could just inflate a bouncy castle in the master bedroom ... hmmm ... that thread deserves its own blog, I'm thinking :) Anyway, my oldest is yammering on ... and on .... and on, about ... well, honestly - I was not paying attention (in knowing her you would be aware of the fact that she lulls your brain into numbness with the incessant yammering ... the child never stops). But she wound herself around to talking about her baby sister learning to swim in the pool ... all - by - herself! (Obviously she was not all by herself, I was in the pool with them ... but for the point of the story...all - by - herself!) She proceed to regale us with the scientific explanation of why her sissy was able to do such a thing: Human Know how. Now this caught my attention. She was looking for another word, but came out with that instead. I questioned her a little on where she came up with that phrase "Human know how". She told me she had seen (on Miss Spider) a show where a butterfly was able to find its way home even when they couldn't see anything ... it was called 'butterfly know how' and she just replaced butterfly with human (her words). Someone with a slightly larger vocabulary might have said - instinct. She's 6, folks. Does this not seem like a fairly big concept for a kid that age to have such a grasp of? I work with people unable to grasp concepts less in depth than human instinct ... This was not something we discussed with her. It was a case of her plucking a lesson (of sorts) from a show on (bad ol') TV and applying it to her sister's (seemingly magical) accomplishment. I'll also point out that she hasn't even seen an episode of Miss Spider since Summer began - so this was something she had embedded in her little bean for some time. Now, perhaps I am simply being an overly proud mama, but that strikes me as a pretty intelligent comment coming from a six year old - am I crazy? Okay - don't answer that question ... I meant pertaining to this SPECIFIC situation.

And then, there is the other one... this one is my cuddle muffin - and the baby - and looks like Shirley Temple ... and is as bad as bad gets. This is a kid that can manipulate a situation to her advantage better than almost anyone else I know. So two weeks ago, I had to follow my Mom down to a service station so she could drop off her car (and I could take her home). I didn't have an issue with this, but in trying to get my monsters in the van, well they irked me into a pissy and I was huffy when departing the driveway. Mom was ahead of me ... and the girls were freaking because they couldn't see her ... and I snapped back at them that she was right THERE! and then I said, but "she's goin' the WRONG FREAKIN' WAY!!!". (She actually wasn't BTW, I was mistaken)

Side bar ... can anyone see where this is going? I bet some of you parents can...

So Mom gets back in the van after signing her car in and we head home ... uneventful. The next day comes and we have to go after dinner to pick up the car. We all pile into the van and proceed to pull to the bottom of the driveway. This must have jogged my lil' darlin's memory, because she proceeded to blurt out "Gamma .... Mommy said you were goin' THE WRONG BLOODY WAY last night!" ... 'course Mom didn't hear her the first SEVEN times she repeated it. Lucky number eight took care of it, though. I was laughing because this kind of thing is typical for her - what else could I do, really? When I asked her why she told on me she informed me it was because I wouldn't let her get an ice cream cone again that night, and that I should have -i f I didn't want Gamma to know I was saying bad things about her ... not so cute now, eh??? Little shit. What am I raising here??? Evil geniuses, I say. I guess all that is left is to teach them a sinister laugh and call it a day ...

Have I mentioned I live in constant fear of their teens?

Saturday, July 11, 2009

For the most part ...

My husband and I get along pretty well most of the time. Really I think the only reason for this is that he was married to Medusa before me ... and really, my worst doesn't even touch a good day with her - according to him, anyway. There's not much I can do to really piss him off ... and when I am three headed and looking for a row ... well usually it just rolls off his back like water over duck's down. I guess that makes me pretty lucky - 'cause I think many would attest to the fact that I am not the 'easiest chick to spend huge amounts of time with'. Not that I am without redeeming qualities ... I have a few. To hear my husband tell it - I am near perfect. We had a conversation last weekend that went something like this: (Me)I dunno why you put up with me, hun - I have been so bitchy and sooky for the past few weeks ... I'm even tired of me. (He) Oh, please - you are the perfect partner ... you are smart, funny, beautiful and you have a good job and take good care of your family. You are a wonderful lover, a great cook and, for the most part - a great mother. Now, if you are someone who knows women fairly well - you'll know which part of that passage I grabbed onto. Okay, let me get this straight ... there is something about me that is imperfect in your eyes??? What in the hell is that supposed to mean??? I am sometimes something other than a "great mother"???

I have to tell ya - this has been torturing my mind all week. Who the hell is he to disparage my parenting capabilities? He the reason I am left being the heavy all the time ... if it wasn't for his lack of ability, I might get to be 'good cop' now and again ... for the most part. Who the hell does he think he is? Geez.

Do you see why men and women have such a hard time getting along? In his mind, he polished my apple when I was feeling down ... little does he know I have had this seething under the surface for an entire week. Bubbling on low until it has made a thick, sticky paste of pissed off ... just waiting for an opportunity to get thrown in his face. I find it musing when I can actually get enough clarity to see this BEFORE it becomes an issue. It's pathetic, really. But funny, since he hasn't experienced my "wrath". He's on his way home from work in a few minutes and we'll have our first of two nights (per week) together. It's been a pretty good day - much needed after such a crappy week.

Guess I should go start our dinner.

'til next time - D

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

How Do You Solve A Problem Like Maria?

I have a six year old daughter. When she was born, she was like my own little bundle of perfect and sunshine. Being her mother was so much better than any single thing I could imagine. I nearly choked on the rush of love and emotion I experienced every time I held her, rocked her, nursed her. Those enormous blueberry eyes of hers and that flaxen hair ... just the most beautiful baby I had ever laid eyes on. I stayed home with her for an entire year ... took every last hour I could squeeze. Going back to work was agony. I had an hour plus commute both ways and I can remember crying all the way to work every morning for a month. I thought it was going to kill me - I really did. We immediately started trying to get pregnant so I could be home with her once again.

Now for anyone who doesn't know me - I am not a stay at home type of person. I need to work at something other than raising children ... I simply do not have the enduring patience that is required to be with my kids (any kids) all the time. So this concept was very odd for me.

Fast forward 5 years. Daughter #1 is now 6&1/2 and daughter #2 is 4. D#1 has a 'tude' the size of the Atlantic ocean. She has just completed her first year of school ... and it is official in her mind: Her father and I are clueless. Here we have a child that has it in her head that she rules this roost. It is her way or the highway. Much of this is our fault. We have spoiled both of them. Mr.Dragonfly especially is becoming synonymous with empty threats ... that is parenting suicide, in my opinion. So ... this leaves mama to be the heavy. I hate playing bad cop all of the time...

We were being seated to our evening meal Saturday past and my lovely had been having a bit of a challenging afternoon. She had just managed to untangle her twisted self from some other major injustice ... like her sister said something that she thought (though had not spoken as yet) of first and somehow this became the worst day EVER (I know what you are thinking, everyone does ... what did you expect when you opted to procreate ... you are the Queen of Drama Island) ... so as she rounded the corner and spied the noodley-goop that I had served up for dinner ... well, to say she lost it would be a slight understatement. I sent her up to her room because we simply could not calm her down ... well ... let me just say - I have seen my kid 'wig' before, but this display was a new level for her. She stomped up the stairs and started screaming at the top of her little lungs ... which let me just say are obviously very healthy. My mother is sitting across the table from me ... giving me "the face". Finally, she can stand it no longer and says "SOMEBODY needs to go up there and comfort her ... she's never going to calm herself down". To which I replied "she'll wear herself out at some point - ignore her". I continued getting "the face" and I told her that if she didn't like my parenting tactics, that she was welcome to 'go to her room, too'. (There - might as well alienate everyone) It was at this point that my sweet first born opted to take her protest to the top of the stairs, where she proceeded to start banging on the walls and slamming a couple of doors. We did not react. Then she started to screech again ... I put my hand on my husband's arm as he was getting up and said "wait". He said he wasn't going to yell, just ask her to please take her screaming back to her own room as the rest of us were trying to eat our dinner. .. and he did. In a perfectly calm voice and manner. I'm gonna say that was what finally hit the home run with her. Her approach failed - we were not giving in. It wasn't long after that she settled herself down enough to join us at the table ... and low and behold - she wound up eating most of her dinner. It was a horrible meal for the rest of us, but I think she may have learned something ... I think we all did.

This parenting shit is hard friggen work. You need to have nerves of steel, a degree in psychology and a steady supply of alcohol (for your own sanity)... and that is just to keep from giving them away or hurting them. How did my precious little cherub turn into such a brat? It breaks my heart - and I know we did it to her. Now I have the little Miss coming up behind her, learning from the master. She's the more devious of the two. She has this way of working most situations to her favor without all the ruckus. Should be a real treat to see how these two are as teens ...

I'm scared ... really, really scared.